The American Lung Association has found that the average adult gets up to four colds every year. That’s a lot even if most colds are minor viral infections. It doesn’t matter what part of the body the virus attacks, if it leads to congestion, it can cause an ear infection.
Despite the fact that many people think colds are harmless, there are some symptoms you shouldn’t ever dismiss. Scientists have finally confirmed the suspected link between ear infections and the common cold. This finding is significant, because ear infections are a major contributing factor in the disturbing rise in antibiotic resistance.
You Should Never Ignore These Symptoms
It’s quite common to feel stuffed up in your ears when you have a cold due to the fact that your sinuses and ears are linked. If you’re taking a decongestant, and your head is draining fluids, this feeling generally comes and goes. But in just a few hours congestion can develop into an ear infection. This is the reason that if you’re experiencing pain or discharge in your ears you need to get professional assistance.
Pain is a hint that your cold is moving in the wrong direction and can be an indication of inflammation or infection. You can protect against permanent injury, if caught early enough, by getting a prescription for antibiotics. It can lead to eardrum scaring and may harm the cilia if ignored.
How significant is this? A cold will normally only cause temporary problems with your hearing. Damage to your eardrum or cilia, however, can lead to permanent hearing loss…which can lead to other health issues.
Hearing Loss Can Impact Your General Health
Hearing loss has been connected to other health concerns, from loss of cognitive ability to depression to a rise in accidents. Researchers have recently shown a connection between hearing loss and more expensive healthcare expenses. As a matter of fact, in only a decade, untreated hearing loss can raise your healthcare costs by 46%.
Your chance of needing hospitalization with untreated hearing loss increases by 50%….and the likelihood of being readmitted also increases.
Even a small amount of damage can add up. Johns Hopkins discovered that just having slight hearing loss can double your chances of getting dementia. Consider the fact that each time you get an ear infection it can cause scarring that leads to significant hearing loss over time.
Suffering From Pain for Days?
Have you already neglected ear pain for days? Seek treatment immediately. Don’t make the common mistake of waiting too long. There’s a reason why the majority of health insurance companies consider ear pain or indications of an ear infection an emergency. If you feel pain in your ear during a cold or after a cold schedule a hearing examination. A professional evaluation can determine if:
- You have an ear infection currently
- there is any affect on your inner ear
- you need to address injury to the eardrum
Pain or temporary loss of hearing can be caused by an obstruction in the ear that can also be determined by a professional ear exam.
It’s a sure sign that you need to see a professional if you have prolonged loss of hearing or ear pain. Schedule a hearing exam right away.